HomeEasy to StartB.Tech Semester VIIIHS 402 Philosophy of Science

Philosophy of science: objectives, nature and scope, philosophy as a human science and science as natural philosophy.- Nature of scientific explanation: causal laws of Descartes and Liebniz; the pragmatics of explanation: the unification model of explanation; Case studies: Galileo-s laws describing the motion of freely falling bodies and projectiles and derivation of Newton-s laws and Kepler-s laws; Induction:falsifiability, justification and complexity of scientific inferences; ambiguities of induction and Goodman-s new riddle of induction; Case study: Bayles- theorem;Metaphysics of scientific entities: realism about scientific entities; Space, time, creation and evolution: Indian and western perspectives; Case studies: axiomatism and computational positivism in mathematics, Godel-s theorem; Confirmation of scientific theory: objective evidence, Aristotle-s worldview and later developments; problem of under determination of theory by evidence; Case studies: Heisenberg-s indeterminacy and quantum collapse; Case study :causation and belief revision:detennination and self-organization, Ramsey test and counterfactual worlds. Geuetic prediction and ethical issues; Challenges to the objectivity of science: the challenge from Kuhnian relativism, the challenge from the sociology of scientific knowledge and social constructivism, the challenge from feminist epistemology and feminist philosophy of science. Case study.





1.-G. Galilie, Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, translated
by S. Drake, Modem Library, 2001.


2.–S. I. Newton, Newton-s Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy and His
System of the World: The System of the World, Translator A.- Motto,
Kessinger Publishing Company, 2003.


3.–A. I. Rosenberg, Philosophy of Science: A Contemporary Introduction,
Routledge, 2000.


4. W. C. Salmon, Four Decades of Scientific Explanation,
University of Minnesota Press, 1989.




1.-F. Suppe, The Structure of Scientific Theories, 2nd Ed,
University of Illinois Press, 1977.


2.-B. Latour and S. Woolgar, Laboratory Life: The Construction of Scientific
Facts, 2nd Ed, Princeton University Press, 1986.


3.-C. Howson and P.- Urbach, Scientific Reasoning: The Bayesian Approach,


4.-D. L. Hull and M. Ruse, The Philosophy of Biology, Oxford University
Press, 1998.


5.-R. Klee, Introduction to the Philosophy of Science: Cutting Nature
at Its Joints, Oxford University Press, 1997.

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